Rhapsodomancy is an ancient form of divination performed by choosing through some method a specific passage or poem from which to ascertain information.
There were various methods for practicing rhapsodomancy. Sometimes, individuals would write several verses or sentences from a poet on multiple pieces of wood, paper, or similar material, shake them together in an urn, and draw one out. Sometimes, they cast dice on a table that was covered with verses; the one on which the die landed was said to contain the prediction.
In ancient Rome, the method of sortes involved opening a book and choosing some verse at first sight. This method was particularly called the sortes Praenestinae; and afterwards, according to the poet who was used, sortes Homerica, sortes Virgilianae, etc.
- ↑ The Encyclopaedia Britannica. Archibald Constable and Company. 1823.
- ↑ http://books.google.com/books?id=ZdAnAAAAMAAJ&dq=%22Rhapsodomancy%22&pg=PA794#v=onepage&q=%22Rhapsodomancy%22&f=false Google Books: Encyclopaedia Britannica
- 15px This article incorporates content from the 1728 Cyclopaedia, a publication in the public domain.